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Athenaze - Lesson Divisions

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Athenaze - Lesson Divisions

Postby jaihare » Tue Sep 09, 2014 8:32 am

Hello, everyone who is involved in the Athenaze study. There is an issue that I brought up to Klewlis regarding the division of the lessons that I think is worth bringing up here for your consideration.

The Athenaze textbook is actually divided up into thirty lessons, but each one is labeled as if it were fifteen lessons. Thus, we are just doing “Lesson 4” now, but it is really two lessons that we are working on here on the forum. There is Lesson 4α (on pages 36-45) and Lesson 4β (on pages 46-53). Each of these α and β sections is separate from the other. I think it’s a mistake to try to cram all of this textbook into just fifteen weeks, doing Lesson 4α and Lesson 4β on the same week. You may not notice it now, since the lessons are relatively easy, but it will get harder and then you’ll regret the current agreement.

I suggest that starting with Lesson 5α, we have a thread for 5α and a separate thread for 5β – and so on for the rest of the study. It will increase the amount of threads created on the forum by only ten (since we have not done things this way from the beginning), but it will make the work much more suitable in terms of time spent on each lesson and the necessary digestion period for each level of work.

Please consider this as a group. Whatever you may have agreed to before, I don’t think you will be able to maintain the current set up indefinitely. Additionally, there may already be people who have dropped their participation because of the current pace – who may be willing to pick it back up if they won’t feel driven too strongly.

I think others who have studied Athenaze in the past will agree with me. We finished level one of Athenaze on the GreekStudy list a long time ago as a group, and we did it as I’m suggesting – and even then it was difficult to keep up.

For your consideration,
Jason
Last edited by jaihare on Thu Sep 11, 2014 12:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Athenaze - Lesson Divisions

Postby jaihare » Tue Sep 09, 2014 8:44 am

I did the collation of lessons through Greek Study for the first level of Athenaze in 2010. You can view all of the contributions of our collaborators here. (You may also use this as a sort of answer key, if you like.)

Notice that just before lesson 7 we even divided section β of each lesson into two segments (one per week). That is, we did section α of each lesson one week, then we divided section β into two weeks. All of our work is online except for the collations 16β, which I lost some time ago.

I'm happy to work with you guys at whatever pace you set, but I can guarantee that you will not finish this book at the current pace. Everyone will find it too frustrating. Time is a necessary aspect of language learning and acquisition - and you will not have enough time to digest the concepts or even complete the exercises every week at the pace which you have chosen.

Regards,
Jason
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Re: Athenaze - Lesson Divisions

Postby klewlis » Tue Sep 09, 2014 3:07 pm

jaihare wrote:Whatever you may have agreed to before, I don’t think you will be able to maintain the current set up indefinitely.


If you go back and read the group threads, you'll see that what we actually agreed to was to take it as it comes, and to adjust the pace if it was too fast or too slow for everyone.

If the others want to slow it down we can, but I don't see a need to increase the number of threads dedicated to it.

So far you're the only one saying it's too fast. :)
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Re: Athenaze - Lesson Divisions

Postby jaihare » Wed Sep 10, 2014 2:41 am

klewlis wrote:So far you're the only one saying it's too fast. :)

Because I know what's coming?

OK, test and see. No problem. I was just hoping to take care of a problem before it developed and people disappeared from the study group, but whatever you prefer.

Always learn from mistakes - preferably those of others. Or, bulldoze ahead and make your own mistakes that hopefully will not have great repercussions. I'm just trying to help you avoid the inevitability of the current path.
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Re: Athenaze - Lesson Divisions

Postby klewlis » Wed Sep 10, 2014 5:39 am

didn't I just say "if others want to slow it down we can"? I'm not sure why you're making an issue of it.
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Re: Athenaze - Lesson Divisions

Postby jaihare » Thu Sep 11, 2014 8:10 am

klewlis wrote:If you go back and read the group threads, you'll see that what we actually agreed to was to take it as it comes, and to adjust the pace if it was too fast or too slow for everyone.

Can you give me a link to these "group threads," please? I looked back here on the "Learning Greek" forum, and I haven't found any threads with titles dealing with setting up this group.

Is the goal for you to, in the meantime, open a new thread for a new lesson every Sunday? Fifteen threads for fifteen chapters of the book? Are you sure that the other participants didn't understand a "lesson" or a "chapter" to refer to, for example, chapter 15α versus chapter 15β? I haven't read the threads, so I don't know what assumptions might have gone into the setting up of the group. I'd love to see what was exchanged then.

Thanks.
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Re: Athenaze - Lesson Divisions

Postby jaihare » Thu Sep 11, 2014 8:14 am

klewlis wrote:I'm not sure why you're making an issue of it.

Because I think it's important that people LEARN from this experience, and I am certain that the course that you're pushing forward to will NOT lend itself to good learning. It is a BAD practice to overload students and drive them forward too quickly. Timing is important when it comes to absorption and the acquisition of a language. Fifteen weeks is not enough time. One week per chapter (that is, 15α and 15β together considered as a chapter, for example) is absolutely not enough for absorption.

It's important that people read the stories, take their time, read the stories again, do the exercises, repeat the story reading, read it out loud, go over it again and again. If we are concerned about people really learning here, we need to be aware of the timing that is allowed per lesson. It's just not enough.

You're, of course, free to do whatever you want, but I think you're making a mistake.
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Re: Athenaze - Lesson Divisions

Postby jaihare » Thu Sep 11, 2014 9:15 am

(PNG Containing Information)

At this point, I have recorded who has done each lesson, even with incomplete answers. This is what I find:

Lesson 1:
klewlis
CanadianGirl
aristoteles
jaihare

Lesson 2:
jaihare
daivid
brunapogliano

Lesson 3:
klewlis
CanadianGirl
jaihare
daivid
brunapogliano

Lesson 4:
klewlis
jaihare
brunapogliano
ariphron

Lesson 5:
jaihare

So far, there isn't any consistency. At this point, two people have done only one lesson (whether in part or in whole), two people have done only two, two people have done three, and I'm the only one who has done all five of the lessons completely. Do we think that it's a good idea not to take the time to pay attention to the details and to read the fine points? Taking time with the lessons will give everyone the opportunity to do the lessons completely, to review, to practice, to talk about it. We should also be noticing who isn't contributing and contacting them to see if they are still interested, if they need more time, what's going on with them. It's about accountability, which is part of the concept of studying in a group. Is this a study group or an independent study where you just post what you can when you can?

An example of the benefit of taking time with the lessons is the use of enclitics, which are explained on page 9. We see how *χαλεπὸς ἐστίν becomes χαλεπός ἐστιν, how *ἄνθρωπος ἐστιν becomes ἄνθρωπός ἐστιν, etc. The authors describe what happens with the shift of accents. Yet, when τε is presented as an enclitic and postpositive in 3α, and we see it in several examples (such as ὅ τε Δικαιόπολις καὶ ὁ δοῦλος προσχωροῦσι καὶ βλέπουσι πρὸς τὸ ἄροτρον in Exercise 3α on page 27, to mention one), you still didn't recognize ὅ τε Φίλιππος καὶ ὁ πάππος in 5β's reading on page 62.

If more time had been given to lesson 3, you would have had time to review every word in the vocabulary and read the stories again and again, to internalize the point that τε is an enclitic and that ὅ τε... καὶ ὁ... just means "both... and..." (just like ἥ τε Μυρρίνη καὶ ἡ Μέλιττα "both Myrrine and Melissa"). These things can be best internalized by reading and reading again the stories, reviewing the exercises (not just doing them once), spending time in the lessons. It's important, and it will become more important as the chapters get more difficult.

I think it's important to build good practices when things are easy so that you will not be confused and having to change your study habits once things get difficult. Don't you agree?
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Re: Athenaze - Lesson Divisions

Postby klewlis » Thu Sep 11, 2014 3:22 pm

wow, you're really on a campaign here!

Take a deep breath; this is not a life or death matter. Nor is it a university course taught by a professor. I agreed only to facilitate by posting the threads. I did not agree to contacting individuals to find out where they are at, or examining their posts to identify their learning gaps, or to being responsible in any way, shape or form for anyone's learning but my own.

If anyone is struggling it is their responsibility as adults and independent learners to speak up. It is not my responsibility to chase them down.

I don't personally care if we do one lesson per week or one page per week, nor is my ego invested in whether or not the study group is done "right".
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Re: Athenaze - Lesson Divisions

Postby CanadianGirl » Thu Sep 11, 2014 8:24 pm

I'm happy either way-just wish I had more time to devote to this. I'm grateful it's underway, even if I lag behind a little-this is super good practice for me.
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Re: Athenaze - Lesson Divisions

Postby ariphron » Thu Sep 11, 2014 9:48 pm

It was amusing to find my name at the top of a list of people who "may need to be contacted" the day after I made my first contribution to the study group, especially considering that all my previous posts to Textkit had waited three weeks before showing up on the forum. This factor may have deterred others from joining the group; certainly those who are interested in working through the first few lessons of Athenaze will disproportionately be new members.

There isn't much risk of people feeling pressured to get through the textbook at the target pace. The only deadline relevant here is "how long after the last post to a lesson's thread is it rude to bring it back by posting my answers?"

I doubt that discussion will get lively enough to justify breaking the threads by half-lesson; just go forward, and hopefully some more advanced members will join as the study progresses through the textbook.
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Re: Athenaze - Lesson Divisions

Postby klewlis » Thu Sep 11, 2014 11:26 pm

ariphron wrote:It was amusing to find my name at the top of a list of people who "may need to be contacted" the day after I made my first contribution to the study group, especially considering that all my previous posts to Textkit had waited three weeks before showing up on the forum. This factor may have deterred others from joining the group; certainly those who are interested in working through the first few lessons of Athenaze will disproportionately be new members.

There isn't much risk of people feeling pressured to get through the textbook at the target pace. The only deadline relevant here is "how long after the last post to a lesson's thread is it rude to bring it back by posting my answers?"

I doubt that discussion will get lively enough to justify breaking the threads by half-lesson; just go forward, and hopefully some more advanced members will join as the study progresses through the textbook.


Glad to have you join, and we don't have a deadline for how long one can take to answer the exercises, so no worries about that.

Unfortunately thesaurus was the only moderator around for some time, so the approval of posts fell behind. Now that there are two of us we've caught up again. :) You wouldn't believe how many spam posts we delete on a weekly basis!
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Re: Athenaze - Lesson Divisions

Postby jaihare » Fri Sep 12, 2014 3:05 pm

ariphron wrote:It was amusing to find my name at the top of a list of people who "may need to be contacted" the day after I made my first contribution to the study group, especially considering that all my previous posts to Textkit had waited three weeks before showing up on the forum. This factor may have deterred others from joining the group; certainly those who are interested in working through the first few lessons of Athenaze will disproportionately be new members.


Perhaps the word "may" means something different to you than it means to me. ;) These are the types of things that teachers use to track student participation. Sometimes we don't even notice when someone drops out of an informal study like this. Perhaps they would stay the course if they felt like someone even cared that they were participating. Thus, I think it's a good idea to mark who contributed to a specific lesson and to see if there's a problem. Not everyone is outspoken (like me). Some need encouragement, and I think it's not good to let them fall through the cracks - unless this is just a group for the outspoken and confident.

I, of course, wasn't saying that we need to check up on you, since you've just begun. However, there is one person, for instance, who did only the first lesson. If something is hindering him from participating, isn't it worth looking into and asking him if everything is OK? Did anyone even notice that he hasn't posted since the first lesson? Does it not matter to anyone? I mean, if that's the type of group we want to me, then that's fine, too. I thought it was a "group" study, though, and I think we can do things better than an impersonal system that doesn't look at individual's contributions and check on their progress. Maybe I'm just delusional, though. (And I have to say that I think it odd that I'm being turned into the bad guy on this thread because I give a hoot about other people's success with learning this language.)

ariphron wrote:I doubt that discussion will get lively enough to justify breaking the threads by half-lesson; just go forward, and hopefully some more advanced members will join as the study progresses through the textbook.


It's not about lively discussion. It's about the ability to complete the work. Oh well...

Let's do it this way, then.

As it is, I feel like I've been personally attacked on this thread for trying to call attention to something that I think will impede people's progress and for bringing up the idea of follow-up and accountability to the group. I don't feel that I've done anything wrong, and yet this is what I'm made to feel. Makes it seem to me like welcoming you to the forum (which I had intended to do either way) and to this study is now even unwelcome and out-of-place because I've somehow become your enemy on account of attempting to make this study work better than other similar online ventures.

Ugh. :-S
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Re: Athenaze - Lesson Divisions

Postby daivid » Sat Sep 13, 2014 12:57 am

I think jaihare talks a lot of sense. It's not difficult to do both lessons together but is also quite easy to keep putting it off till tomorrow. Splitting the task into smaller munches makes it easier to avoid that trap.
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Re: Athenaze - Lesson Divisions

Postby klewlis » Sat Sep 13, 2014 4:54 am

daivid wrote:I think jaihare talks a lot of sense. It's not difficult to do both lessons together but is also quite easy to keep putting it off till tomorrow. Splitting the task into smaller munches makes it easier to avoid that trap.


ok then how about this: we'll keep each lesson in one thread as it is now but I will post part A one week and then part B the following week.

I will keep typing out the exercises for the group but I don't always have time to add my own answers (I work too much and am happy to get them on paper most weeks!).
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Re: Athenaze - Lesson Divisions

Postby daivid » Sat Sep 13, 2014 11:04 am

klewlis wrote:
daivid wrote:I think jaihare talks a lot of sense. It's not difficult to do both lessons together but is also quite easy to keep putting it off till tomorrow. Splitting the task into smaller munches makes it easier to avoid that trap.


ok then how about this: we'll keep each lesson in one thread as it is now but I will post part A one week and then part B the following week.

I will keep typing out the exercises for the group but I don't always have time to add my own answers (I work too much and am happy to get them on paper most weeks!).


If we are going to do the alpha and the betas separately then I think they need to be in separate threads. I don't want to even look at a thread until I've had a good stab at the exercise. For me keeping the two distinct (so I can treat them as different tasks) is a bigger issue than the pace we go.

A thread a week isn't going to swamp the forum in any case.
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Re: Athenaze - Lesson Divisions

Postby ariphron » Sat Sep 13, 2014 4:35 pm

Separate threads for half-lessons are fine, although I for one am good at skipping other people's answers, so I do not consider it a problem to scroll past other people's answers in order to glance at the discussion. There is a risk, however, of going too slowly. Most people (perhaps all) are doing this for review, and since Athenaze presents grammar slowly, we'll derive more benefit from later exercises that cover (at least) middle voice and participles. At the rate of a half-lesson per week, we run the risk of losing interest before we've gotten to the good parts. Anyone else impatient for a group on Athenaze Book 2?
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Re: Athenaze - Lesson Divisions

Postby NateD26 » Sat Sep 13, 2014 10:46 pm

ariphron wrote:Separate threads for half-lessons are fine, although I for one am good at skipping other people's answers, so I do not consider it a problem to scroll past other people's answers in order to glance at the discussion. There is a risk, however, of going too slowly. Most people (perhaps all) are doing this for review, and since Athenaze presents grammar slowly, we'll derive more benefit from later exercises that cover (at least) middle voice and participles. At the rate of a half-lesson per week, we run the risk of losing interest before we've gotten to the good parts. Anyone else impatient for a group on Athenaze Book 2?

Ariphron, you can always open a group for Athenaze book 2, if you so choose, and if the pace
and progress of this group is too slow for your level. For some it's a revision of Greek, for others,
a fresh look at it. But you got to take into consideration other factors, such as the amount of time
a participant has (or indeed, is willing) to devote each week.

From my own experience, some of the lessons in Athenaze are a breathe while others can
present difficulties. Half-lesson a week is a comfortable and manageable pace. :)
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Re: Athenaze - Lesson Divisions

Postby jaihare » Sun Sep 14, 2014 5:45 am

As per following up on progress, if you guys prefer that I (we) not keep track of who has done what and to follow up with those who might need follow up, just say so. New students who have only finished one or two lessons are, of course, not going to be "targets" for follow-up. I'm thinking of those who have participated in the past and then disappeared. Perhaps they need some encouragement. If you'd prefer that we not worry about it and let people fall out as they wish, then I'll take the hint.
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Re: Athenaze - Lesson Divisions

Postby daivid » Mon Apr 27, 2015 2:56 pm

I have been thru a bad patch with my Greek so combining the alpha and beta lessons in one thread is not the only reason that my attempt to participate again for lesson 10 failed but the combining the alpha and the beta lessons into one thread was a very big part of it.
If there were a strong downside to splitting I wouldn't ask but no one seemed to see a downside (merely others didn't see the reasons for splitting as very good).

So I will ask again - please can the alpha and beta lessons be split? I don't think I will be able to participate if they are not.
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Re: Athenaze - Lesson Divisions

Postby jaihare » Mon Apr 27, 2015 3:07 pm

daivid wrote:I have been thru a bad patch with my Greek so combining the alpha and beta lessons in one thread is not the only reason that my attempt to participate again for lesson 10 failed but the combining the alpha and the beta lessons into one thread was a very big part of it.
If there were a strong downside to splitting I wouldn't ask but no one seemed to see a downside (merely others didn't see the reasons for splitting as very good).

So I will ask again - please can the alpha and beta lessons be split? I don't think I will be able to participate if they are not.


We've been splitting alpha from beta the whole time.

Personally, I would like to split the longer sections (mostly beta) into another two sections. So, there would be 12α and 12β1 and 12β2. Three sections for each lesson. We've been doing two.

We actually took more than three months on lesson 11, so you should have been able to participate no matter the time limit! CanadianGirl broke the lessons all up, and I just checked them all together at the end.

Feel free to do it your way - but get busy with the Greek!
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Re: Athenaze - Lesson Divisions

Postby daivid » Mon Apr 27, 2015 3:36 pm

jaihare wrote:We've been splitting alpha from beta the whole time.

Personally, I would like to split the longer sections (mostly beta) into another two sections. So, there would be 12α and 12β1 and 12β2. Three sections for each lesson. We've been doing two.

We actually took more than three months on lesson 11, so you should have been able to participate no matter the time limit! CanadianGirl broke the lessons all up, and I just checked them all together at the end.

Feel free to do it your way - but get busy with the Greek!


It's not the time factor that is the problem. It's the combining it all into one thread that is. Basically I have phobia against spoilers so if I fall behind and am not sure where you are at I drop out. At the moment as you have just started a the 12 lessons that is not a problem as that coincides with my decision to give it another go. If however I fall a bit behind I will hit the same wall as last time.

Unless the lessons are split into separate threads that is with a new topic for each then I don't feel free to do them separately.

Could the current Lesson 12 thread be renamed Athenaze Study Group - Lesson 12 - Alpha and a separate thread(ie topic) for beta or better still separate threads for beta-1 and beta-2?
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